Links to forums or other information

Some other links that you might find useful:

Making Electric Circuits and Other Electronics Projects

How to Make a Battery

Electrical Education: Science Lessons and Activities

Residential Electrical Circuits Explained

And thanks to Hannah and her Scout troop for this useful guide to basic concepts of electricity

March Meeting

Here are some videos from line following at the March meeting.

February Meeting

Pictures and video from the meeting today. It was a great event, we ran a basic line following course. I had a Parallax Boe-bot, Markus brought a Sumovore, a Pololu 3pi, and one of his own creation. Another fellow (sorry, didn’t catch his name) built a variant of Dan Royer’s CanDo line follower kit.

Bob's very old Boe-Bot, still capable of making it around the track


Line Following Event Rules

Line Following Event Rules

All rules and event details are subject to change. Best effort will be made to provide notice, but no guarantees.

Robot Specifications

  • Robots must be autonomous. Data links to off-board computers allowed, but no teleoperation. In other words, no human-operated remote controls.
  • The maximum robot width is 8.5″. The maximum robot length is 11″.
  • The robot must start the race in this orientation. So, one cannot angle the robot one way for qualification measuring and then rotate the robot to a different orientation for starting the race.
  • There are no constraints on robot height.
  • There are no constraints on robot weight.

Track Specifications

  • The track surface is assembled from 11 3/4 inch (298 mm) squares of 1/4 in (6 mm) hardboard. Each square may be plus or minus 1/8 inch (3 mm) in size.
  • The track surface may have discontinuities, not to exceed 1/8 inch (3 mm).
  • The track surface is painted flat white.
  • The course line is 3/4 inch (19 mm) wide, plus or minus 1/8 inch (3 mm).
  • The course line is painted flat black.
  • The course line may have discontinuities, not to exceed 1/8 inch (3mm).
  • The course line may be curved, with a centerline radius of 6 inches (152 mm).
  • The robot must deal with the lighting conditions as they appear. That is, room lighting and window drapes will be set as desired by the judges and won’t be modified for individual contestants. Also, flash photography and IR focusing cameras will be allowed, unless the judges deem such activities as interfering with the ability to hold the event in general.

Race Operations

  • Each robot gets one or more opportunities to “test drive” on the track for testing and calibration.
  • Test opportunities are first-come, first-served.
  • One robot races on the track at a time.
  • Multiple restarts will be allowed, at the discretion of the judges.

Race Scoring

  • The robot must complete three laps of the track for a run to qualify. The total time for all three laps will be recorded for each run.
  • The robot can begin the race while moving. Its not required to start from a stopped position.
  • The robot with the fastest time to complete all three laps will be the winner.
  • A machine that has no part of its structure over the course line, or is clearly not steering in response to the course line, is no longer tracking the course line. The wandering robot must be restored to the line, or it will be disqualified at the discretion of the judges.
  • The penalty for restoring a wandering robot is 5 seconds for each time the robot is touched. This time penalty will be added to the total time.
  • A robot which cannot track the course line will be disqualified, at the sole discretion of the judges.

Sample Track

Here is one example of how the track might be laid out.

Additional Information

Please direct questions and comments regarding this contest to the Vancouver Robotics Club mailing list, to the attention of Bob Cook or Markus Lampert.

Pics from January Meeting

Some pictures from the meeting back in January. Yep, that really is Wall-e, an amazing robot project.







VEX Robotics Challenge 2012-2013

Dates for the various VRC (VEX Robotics Challenge) Sack Attack events local (at least reasonably local) to Vancouver.

Saturday November 17, 2012
Everett, WA

Saturday November 24, 2012
Surrey Enver Creek

Saturday December 1, 2012
British Columbia Fall Championship
R.A.McMath Secondary School

Saturday January 26, 2013
Vancouver Island VEX Championships
Lake Trail Jr. Secondary, Courtenay, BC

Saturday February 9, 2013
Kelowna VRC Tournament (Okanagan’s First!)
Okanagan College, Kelowna, BC

Saturday March 9, 2013
British Columbia VEX Championship
British Columbia Institute of Technology, Burnaby Campus

Behaviour-based mobile robot presentation

Bob Cook gave a presentation about his project that utilizes “behaviour-based” control software:

Robot Racing 2011 at UBC

I was out at UBC today watching the Robot Racing 2011 event. Had lots of fun, and was impressed with what was accomplished. There were nine or ten robots registered for the day, although not all of them ran, unfortunately.

The event had three parts: (1) technical presentation; (2) drag race (fastest robot staying within the course wins); and (3) something akin to the DARPA urban challenge with traffic signs and lights, hills, multiple robots, and different terrain. The best were from the UBC team and the Waterloo team. Both were particularly impressive, although the Waterloo team was amazing on the drag race course.

Pictures and video after the break below, enjoy!

Read more »

Links to other robot clubs

Robotics Clubs in Canada


City Club Name
AB Calgary WCRS/WCRG – Western Canadian Robotics Society
BC Vancouver VRC – Vancouver Robotics Club
BC Victoria Vancouver Island Robotics
MB Winnipeg Manitoba Robot Games
MB Winnipeg WARS – Winnipeg Area Robots Society
ON Ottawa ORE – Ottawa Robotics Enthusiasts
ON Toronto ECRG – Eastern Canadian Robot Games
QC Montreal RoboMontreal

Robotics Clubs in the United States

State City Club Name
AL Huntsville TMARS – The Mid-south Area Robotics Society
AZ Phoenix PAReX – Phoenix Area Robotics eXperimenters
CA Fullerton Robotics Society of Southern California
CA Riverside Riverside Robotics Society
CA San Diego SDRS – San Diego Robotics Society
CA San Francisco RSA – Robotics Society of America
CA San Jose HomeBrew Robotics Club
CO Denver DARC – Denver Area Robotics Club
CT Hartford CRS – Connecticut Robotics Society
GA Atlanta AHRC – Atlanta Hobby Robot Club
ID Boise – Robotic Online Community
IL Chicago ChiBots – Chicago Area Robotics Group
IL Peoria CIRC – Central Illinois Robotics Club
IN Lafayette Greater Lafayette Lego Robotics Club
MI Ann Arbor Michigan (MI) Robotics Club
MN Minneapolis TCRG – Twin Cities Robotics Group
MO St. Louis MARS – Missouri Area Robotics Society
NC Raleigh TAR – Triangle Area Robotics
NH Nashua Nashua Robot Builders
NV Las Vegas Las Vegas Robot Club
NY Buffalo BufBotics
MA Haverhill Tech Geeks
OR Grants Pass SORC – Southern Oregon Robotics Club
OR Portland PARTS – Portland Area Robotics Society
PA Newtown Delaware Valley Robotics Club
PA Pittsburg Carnegie Mellon Robotics Club
TX Austin The Robot Group
TX Dallas DPRG – Dallas Personal Robotics Group
UT Logan USURobotics – Utah State University Robotics Club
WA Seattle SRS – Seattle Robotics Society

New site!

Welcome to the new, revamped web site for the Vancouver Robotics Club. Over time, this should start to fill up with lots of useful information from our members. Thanks for visiting!